'Cry before shifts': Covid nurse found dead after abuse from patients

·4-min read

A nurse who served on the frontlines during the pandemic has reportedly died from an overdose after writing a poignant post about how tough it has been for healthcare workers since Covid-19 hit.

Season Foremsky worked as an ER and ICU nurse in Calgary, Canada, according to The Globe and Mail.

On September 17, Ms Foremsky made a Facebook post detailing the strain she and her colleagues were under.

She said Calgary healthcare staff did "ok" during the first lockdown but that changed in December.

"Then lockdown came again and the people started to get angry," she wrote.  

"Yet as I was redeployed to my ICU I continued to do my job despite the conspiracy theories and the people 'claiming their rights' were being taken away."

Nurse Season Foremsky, a Covid nurse.
Nurse Season Foremsky detailed how working as a nurse amid the pandemic took a toll on her. Source: Facebook

Ms Foremsky was one of the first people in the area to get the Covid vaccine when it became available.

"Getting vaccinated today so that I can keep myself safe, as well as my patients, as well as my family," she said in a video shared by Alberta Health Services.

She said getting the jab meant a lot to her, as she is immunocompromised. 

Health workers have since been left crying and scared after hospitals became overwhelmed under the Delta variant, Ms Foremsky wrote on Facebook.

"We have PTSD, went on medical leave, and even quit because every single one of us saw this wave coming," she said. 

"Now I’m tired, I cry before my shifts I have severe anxiety but I still give the best care I can."

Healthcare system on brink of collapse

The fourth wave of coronavirus has left Alberta's healthcare system teetering on the brink of collapse, with little respite in sight.

Intensive care units in Alberta are 84 per cent full, Reuters reported on September 28.

Even with nearly 200 "surge" beds added, close to the 90 per cent level at which critical care triage protocols kick in, forcing doctors to ration patient care and prioritise those with the best chance of survival.

Ms Foremsky recalled some of the heartbreaking scenarios she witnessed while working.

"What the public doesn’t know is the scenarios surrounding what I see. I see a daughter say goodbye to her dad after she gave him COVID and I’ve stopped the ventilator," she said.  

"I see a husband and wife die days apart in their 40’s, PREVIOUSLY healthy. 

"I speak with EMS who say if you get in a car crash a call out time to get to you is 40 minutes and people are dying because EMS is going to unvaccinated people who are short of breath and need an ambulance."

According to the Globe and Mail, one of Ms Foremsky's relatives announced her death on Twitter and said she died of an overdose.

Her boyfriend, Christian Moniz, told the publication he did not know she was using substances and that she had been clean for years.

Nurses in an Alberta hospital.
Hospitals in Alberta have become overwhelmed. Source: AFP via Getty

But he also said he knew the stress from her job and the abuse she was copping from patients was taking its toll.

She was the "perfect nurse", he added.

Ms Foremsky's death was acknowledged at a press conference by Alberta Health Services Chief Executive, Verna Yiu, The Globe and Mail reported.

“Our front-line physicians and nurses are under extreme stress and pressure,” Dr. Yiu said. 

“The pandemic is impacting individuals and our teams both physically and mentally.”

To conclude her Facebook post, Ms Foremsky implored people to stop thinking about only themselves.

"I’m not saying get the vaccine, I’m saying keep your mask on, social distance don’t go out when you are sick," she wrote.

With Reuters

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